Koding Books

Professional, free coding tutorials

CMAKE – A practical introduction

Introduction

CMake is a cross-platform build system generator that allows developers to build, test, and package software across multiple platforms and environments. It uses a simple, platform-independent configuration language to describe the build process and generate native build files for various build systems, including Make, Ninja, and Visual Studio.

CMake was created in response to the need for a more flexible and powerful build system to handle modern software development’s complexities. It provides many features that make it a popular choice for building software, including support for multiple build configurations, automatic dependency tracking, and the ability to generate project files for various IDEs.

One of the key benefits of CMake is its ability to generate build files for a wide range of platforms and environments, including Windows, macOS, Linux, and many embedded systems. This makes it an ideal choice for developers who must build and test their software on multiple platforms.

CMake is also highly extensible, with a large number of third-party modules available that can be used to add support for additional libraries, tools, and platforms. This makes it easy to integrate CMake into existing development workflows and toolchains.

CMake is a powerful and flexible build system generator that provides developers with various features and capabilities for building, testing, and packaging software across multiple platforms and environments.

Example

A guided practical example.

Folder Structure

app/
--main.cpp
--mylib.cpp
--mylib.h
--CMakeLists.txt

Code

# main.cpp

#include <iostream>
#include "mylib.h"

int main() {
    std::cout << "Hello, world!" << std::endl;
    std::cout << "The answer is: " << mylib::answer() << std::endl;
    return 0;
}

# mylib.cpp

#include "mylib.h"

int mylib::answer() {
    return 42;
}

# mylib.h

#ifndef MYLIB_H
#define MYLIB_H

namespace mylib {
    int answer();
}

#endif

# CMakeLists.txt

cmake_minimum_required(VERSION 3.10)

project(app)

add_executable(MyProject main.cpp mylib.cpp)

This specifies that the minimum version of CMake required is 3.10, sets the project name to “app”, and creates an executable called “app” that includes the source files main.cpp and mylib.cpp

Run the following commands to generate the build files:

cmake ..
cmake --build .

This tells CMake to build the project using the generated build files.

Run the executable by running the following command:

./app

This should run the executable and output any results to the terminal.

And that’s it! This is a simple example of how to use CMake to build a C++ project. As you become more familiar with CMake, you can add additional features and functionality to your build process, such as support for external libraries, custom build configurations, and more.

The last byte…

CMake is a cross-platform build system generator that allows developers to build, test, and package software across multiple platforms and environments. It uses a simple, platform-independent configuration language to describe the build process and generate native build files for various build systems, including Make, Ninja, and Visual Studio.

CMake provides many features that make it a popular choice for building software, including support for multiple build configurations, automatic dependency tracking, and the ability to generate project files for a variety of IDEs. It is highly extensible, with a large number of third-party modules available that can be used to add support for additional libraries, tools, and platforms.

CMake is often used with other tools and frameworks, such as the Google Test framework for unit testing and the Boost C++ libraries for additional functionality. It is widely used in the open-source community and is supported by a large and active community of developers.

CMake is a powerful and flexible build system generator that provides developers with various features and capabilities for building, testing, and packaging software across multiple platforms and environments.

Ali Kayani

https://www.linkedin.com/in/ali-kayani-silvercoder007/

Post navigation

Leave a Comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Digging into General Relativity with C++

Python Decorators

Building High-Performance Market Data Processors in C++

On Balance Volume stock indicator